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Delhi court extends custodial remand of Arvind Kejriwal till April 1 in excise policy case

The Rouse Avenue Court on Thursday extended the custodial remand of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal by four more days in a money laundering case related to Excise Policy.

ED, while seeking further remand, submitted that data on one mobile phone (belonging to the arrestee’s wife) has been extracted and is being analyzed. It further added that the data from other 4 digital devices seized during a search at Arvind Kejriwal’s premises on March 21, 2024 (belonging to the arrestee himself) is yet to be extracted as the arrestee has sought time to provide password/login credentials after consulting with his lawyers.

Special Judge Kaveri Baweja extended the ED remand period until April 1, 2024.

During the hearing, Arvind Kejriwal himself addressed the court and said there were only four statements, including C Arvind, where he claimed that “he gave some documentation to Manish Sisodia in my presence”.

Kejriwal also referred to the statements of C Arvind, Raghav Magunta and his father, and Sharath Reddy. He also made a statement about the issue of electoral bonds, stating that the BJP is getting money.

Kejriwal pointed out that people are being turned approvers in the case and people are being forced to change their statements.

Meanwhile, seeking custodial remand, ED said that the statements of 3 other persons, relevant to the arrestee, have also been taken during the period of remand. During the ED Custody period, C. Arvind, PS to then Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia who was handed over the draft GoM report 2021-22 at the residence of Arvind Kejriwal and in his presence, was confronted with him.

A statement of one of the candidates for the AAP of Goa elections in 2022 is also recorded during this period. He has revealed that he did not have any money and his election expenditure (all expenses for rallies/ events/public hoardings) was taken care of by AAP Office Delhi only through their associates.

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday issued notice to ED on petition moved by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal challenging his arrest and also challenging ED remand granted by the trial court, while refusing to grant any immediate relief.

Kejriwal was arrested on March 21 by the Enforcement Directorate in relation to the excise policy case on charges of corruption in relation to the case. It is the first time in independent India that a serving Chief Minister has been arrested. The move came after Kejriwal skipped multiple summons by the investigation agency, nine in total, calling them “illegal”.

The case pertains to alleged irregularities and money laundering in framing and implementing the Delhi excise policy 2022, which was later scrapped.

While Kejriwal was not named in the FIRs registered by the ED or the Central Bureau of Investigation in the Delhi excise policy case, his name first found a mention in the ED’s chargesheet, wherein the agency claimed that he allegedly spoke to one of the main accused, Sameer Mahendru, in a video call and asked him to continue working with co-accused and AAP communications-in-charge Vijay Nair.

Nair was among the first people to be arrested by the CBI in the case, in 2022. Subsequently, former deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh were arrested in connection with the case.

(ANI)

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